Thankful: (adjective) pleased and relieved or an expression of gratitude.
Grateful: (adjective) feeling or showing an appreciation of kindness; thankful.
Gratitude: (noun) the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.
This is the time of year when we talk more about being thankful and giving thanks; which is all great! Yet, where I want to draw a line of distinction is the difference between being thankful, being grateful and gratitude. As you see, by definition, they are all closely related, even linked. However, gratitude and being grateful extends the quality of thankful to the act of returning kindness, not just giving thanks for receiving it. Heady stuff, I know. Below are examples drawn from my own experience of being grateful and showing gratitude.
Ways that I feel and express gratitude:
- I feel grateful for people allowing me into their lives, personally and professionally
- I express gratitude by being present, supportive and empowering
- I feel grateful for the blessing of a job that I love
- I express gratitude by sharing my resources, time and talent
- I feel grateful for a healthy mind and body
- I express gratitude by exercising both mind and body and giving them proper fuel mentally and physically
- I feel grateful for a loving family
- I express gratitude by treating my family with dignity, respect and love
When do you feel grateful and how do you express the gratitude in return?
Pay attention to these questions daily and notice what changes in your life.